Jack’s try wins it for Crocs

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Old Crossleyans boosted their hopes of survival in Yorkshire Two with a 20-17 win away to Old Grovians at Apperley Bridge on Saturday.

Captain Jack Hammond’s fine late try gave them a third success of the season and a first under Ian Yates.

Following coach Mark Walton’s exit, a handful of players have rejoined Halifax, and it was again a much-changed Crocs side which took to the field.

The Sweeney brothers were absentees - leaving the Broomfield men short on the goalkicking front - but Jack Hammond was joined by his brothers Billy and George and Neil Richardson played at stand-off.

Kev McGill returned from injury at lock and Rob Oliver played in the back row.

Crocs’ frantic rugby led to mistakes but they just did enough to win a fairly even contest.

There were some fierce exchanges in the opening 25 minutes before the visitors struck first. No 8 Oliver Coyne crossed from close range, after plenty of forward pressure, and Richardson converted.

Home stand off Ben Brown kicked a penalty on 31 minutes and it remained 3-7 up to half time.

Billy Hammond made a 50 metre break and picked up a leg injury but wasn’t forced off until after sending lock Raman Sembi in close to the posts for the second try. Zane Sanders missed the kick but Crocs led 12-3 after 50 minutes.

Home centre Harry Garforth replied with a try under the posts on the hour, converted by full back Anthony Griffin, to cut the gap to two points.

Sanders was on target with a penalty on 65 minutes before a spell of end-to-end play.

Crocs were attacking when an inside pass to James Wainwright, who had replaced Billy Hammond, went to ground. Grovians fed the ball to the left wing and Alex Masterson raced in under the posts and Griffin’s kick made it 17-15.

Jack Hammond then came up with one of his trademark tries, breaking the defence and sprinting to the side of the posts. Both touch judges thought Sanders’ kick was good but the referee over ruled them.

Crocs had to resist late pressure to cling on for what could be a vital four league points.